UNFI offers DoorDash delivery to independent grocers

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United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI) has entered into a reseller agreement with last-mile provider DoorDash to offer its on-demand grocery delivery service to independent supermarkets.

Under the deal, UNFI’s independent retail partners will be able to build an e-commerce and delivery offering using the DoorDash platform, the Providence, R.I.-based grocery distributor said Thursday. The solution will enable customers to shop online for groceries and staple products on DoorDash’s marketplace website and mobile app and receive their orders in as soon as an hour, with no time slot, queues or minimum order size required.

Related: DoorDash, Uber Eats, Instacart challenge major e-commerce retailers

“Our relationship with DoorDash will make it easier for independent retailers to offer online grocery ordering and delivery,” Matt Whitney, chief strategy and innovation officer at UNFI, said in a statement. “We know demand for this functionality continues to be very strong, and to remain competitive, retailers need solutions that offer simple installation and avoid extra labor costs.”

The DoorDash solution will be provided through UNFI Professional Services, the distributor’s roster of services for independent grocers. UNFI now offers more than 150 customizable solutions, ranging from e-commerce, marketing, and retail/payments technology to pricing support, store design and equipment, shelf management and customer services.

Related: Albertsons tapped to pilot DoorDash DoubleDash

UNFI executives have identified professional services and e-commerce as key growth vehicles, and in May the company promoted Whitney to chief strategy and innovation officer to lead those two businesses. Independent retailers are UNFI’s second-largest customer channel, totaling sales of $1.67 billion in fiscal 2021, up 5.2% over two years.

“As the leading last-mile logistics company, DoorDash already has the extensive logistics network in place for grocers to leverage,” Whitney commented.

The reseller pact with UNFI extends DoorDash’s reach in the grocery retail market. According to the San Francisco-based e-commerce specialist, known primarily for restaurant and foodservice delivery, the agreement will help independent grocers grow their businesses by attracting new shoppers, retaining current customers and serving more consumers online in hard-to-reach areas, in turn boosting shopper loyalty and basket size.

“We are excited to work with UNFI to empower local grocers to build an e-commerce and delivery offering that will give customers access to robust local grocery selection on the DoorDash app,” stated Fuad Hannon, vice president of new verticals at DoorDash. “We are proud to play a part in helping local grocers grow their businesses and helping consumers access convenient, on-demand grocery delivery from their local neighborhoods.”

Hispanic grocer Cardenas Markets now offers on-demand delivery service via three partners: DoorDash, Shipt and Instacart.

One new customer is Hispanic grocery chain Cardenas Markets. The Ontario, Calif.-based retailer said Thursday it has launched DoorDash on-demand delivery from all of its 59 stores in California, Nevada and Arizona. Items available for delivery include groceries and essentials as well as authentic Latino dishes prepared daily in Cardenas stores’ Cocinas kitchen department.

“We understand our customers’ shopping preferences continue to evolve, and Cardenas Markets is committed to providing convenient methods for our customers to shop with us,” according to Adam Salgado, chief marketing officer at Cardenas Markets. “Our partnership with DoorDash allows us to further this commitment by providing our valued customers an additional and easily accessible way to shop for our wide variety of product offerings, with average delivery in an hour.”

Cardenas Markets also is available on DashPass, DoorDash’s monthly subscription program that offers members unlimited free delivery and reduced service fees from thousands of restaurants, grocery and convenience stores nationwide. Cardenas said participating customers receive DashPass benefits on eligible orders of $25 or more.

“We are thrilled to partner with Cardenas Markets to offer its consumers convenient, on-demand access to their expansive selection of fresh and specialty groceries on DoorDash,” commented Shanna Prevé, vice president of strategic partnerships and business development at DoorDash. “From preparing traditional meals with family to topping up groceries for the week, consumers can now order their favorite Cardenas items and have them delivered to their doorsteps, on-demand.”

DoorDash gives Cardenas Markets a third on-demand delivery partner. Last month, Cardenas announced a partnership with Target Corp.’s Shipt for same-day delivery service through all stores. The grocer also has offered Instacart delivery since December 2020.

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